TeamViewer Review

Can provide access anywhere and remotely show what is on the desktop of a target machine


What is our primary use case?

The primary use case is getting access to various test machines from one location.

AirTies makes smart WiFi technology which end up in people's homes. I set it up in a house with WiFi devices. We test our Extenders and gateways with a bunch of clients using TeamViewer. I can access the clients to view the data being collected or what's connecting to wired ports. I do this locally, and sometimes, I access the home office in Istanbul.

It is used on a mix of Mac and Windows machines. Even though we have Android and iOS devices to test for WiFi devices, we haven't put TeamViewer on them yet.

We have a lot of IOT devices, but we haven't used TeamViewer that much manage them or get to them. While I'm open to it, I'm not sure of the roadmap for the rest of the QA team.

How has it helped my organization?

We can get machines logged off and check statuses of what's going on a lot easier. Otherwise, you need to track things in the office or wait for someone to be online in Istanbul, which is a bit tough because Istanbul is eight hours ahead of us. 

I've had coworkers who have done remote debugging. So, they ask a client to install TeamViewer so they can access their network from our office and help them troubleshoot problems in the field. In these cases, it is more of a support type role offered.

What is most valuable?

TeamViewer shows you what is on the desktop of the target machine.

The two features that I use the most are getting onto a desktop, so I can access it, and File Transfer. Quite often, we need put new firmware out there across the network or I need to get logs from a device. So, I log into different PC and just use File Transfer to move stuff back and forth.

There have been a couple of times with the handy remote access feature, where I have been asked for something at eight o'clock on a Thursday evening and it is on my desk machine, but I am driving back to my office. With TeamViewer, I can just stay at my home machine, connect to my work machine, and get the data needed without having to drive back across town.

It does have screen recording, which is a cool feature that I have only used twice.

It has been pretty easy to use. It probably does more things than I know that it can do, so it's probably even more robust than I think. What I do use it for, it is a piece of cake to use. They changed a couple of menu options between versions 13 and 14.

What needs improvement?

The remote connection process is reliable, good, and fast. On occasion, when it can't connect to a machine, the error messages aren't always helpful to tell you why you can't connect, as the message doesn't help troubleshoot whether it is too slow, too much interference, etc. I usually have to run to another computer and figure out what is going on, then restart it. The diagnostics could be improved.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been using TeamViewer for a year and a half at AirTies at this location. It now is required with the job. I have a bunch of different PCs spread around the house which I need access to., but don't want to chase down. My previous experience before AirTies was hit or miss. I didn't use it too often, only if I needed to set up remote access for something.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

It has been really stable. It has only locked up once, and I believe this was because I got confused over a network issue since I was changing networks. It is nice that the product is stable. So if I can't connect, it's probably a computer or network problem, not a software problem.

For everything that I use it, it has been rock solid.

I am the only official tester. So, I maintain all the systems. I don't know how many people are on the QA test teams in Istanbul. It might be around 30 people and need an IT team of about 8. However, I am not sure how much they do get called up to test and maintain TeamViewer. Usually, I'm doing all the IT functions.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

It scales pretty well. Every time that we get a new machine, we install TeamViewer on it. However, we only buy a new machine every 14 months or so.

There are no obvious limitation to how many end users that we can support. E.g., our home office has six test locations with an entire development team and QA team where have 50 to 60 people.

Our development, QA, and IT teams have access to TeamViewer. Our development team uses it the most. The IT team, which is about eight people, uses it a little. The QA team use it as needed, but not daily. On and off, 20 people use it, but 60 people have access to it.

How are customer service and technical support?

I haven't had a chance to use their tech support. I've only searched a couple times on forums.

How was the initial setup?

For our client, we just download, install it, install another one internally, and generate the unique ID. Then, you're good to go. The only thing that we do change is the password. It's a lot easier to type it in than the computer generated one.

The install process takes 5 to ten minutes. This includes time to record the ID for look up later on.

What was our ROI?

It saves me a lot of trouble. Time-wise, it is probably saving me several hours because I don't have to travel anywhere. I just wait for the time difference. With the time difference, it is really hard to talk to people halfway around the planet sometimes.

It has probably saved us several thousands of dollars because we have quick access anywhere. We don't have to worry about finding people onsite or arranging conference calls. We also save time and money with it because we don't have to send somebody onsite to troubleshoot.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

TeamViewer offers a free version to try. Download and give it a shot. See what it's like and if you like it, then buy the license for it.

We tell people not to license TeamViewer internally, but they can download it. The product is not quite organized for distribution.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I've used VNC in the past at another company. I like TeamViewer a bit better, as it has more tools built-in. The File Transfer thing is awesome, and it also runs faster than VNC. VNC is free and easy to set up, but it's not user-friendly nor does it have as many options as TeamViewer. VNC doesn't have the powerful UI that TeamViewer has nor does VNC echo the screen like TeamViewer does.

There is also pcAnywhere, which is more PC-centric (not sure if it will work on a Mac). TeamViewer has a lot less overhead versus pcAnywhere. Also, I know that TeamViewer can anywhere and on a Mac.

What other advice do I have?

Test it out and see if it meets your needs. 

It's awesome. Nothing else compares to it at the same level.

Biggest lesson learnt: There are tools available which don't cost too much and can improve productivity. They can make it so you don't have to travel so much.

We haven't done any 5G stuff yet. All our stuff is done WiFi locally.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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